Pastor Troy Murphy’s message on Sunday, Feb. 2 at Green Bay Community Church could be summed up with those two words. Here are key points from that message, the fourth in a five-part series entitled “Owning Your Everyday Work.”
*The challenge we face as Christ followers is to keep the faith switch turned on in our lives, whether we are at church, home, work, the grocery store — wherever we are.
*To redeem means to buy back, to win back, to repurchase, restore. The entire story of Jesus is about redemption. We are sinful and in need of Jesus as our savior. Jesus offers full restoration.
*The Old Testament paints the beginning of God’s story of redemption and pointing people to Christ. It gives the backdrop of why we need a savior.
*The story of Joseph in the Old Testament shows a man who trusted God through some very difficult circumstances in his life. Joseph was hated by his brothers and sold into slavery by them. Later he was falsely accused and thrown into prison. Through it all, Joseph remained confident that God would redeem the broken things in his life.
*The story of Joseph in Genesis can teach us about trusting God:
-Trust God when the pain begins
That’s difficult and often prompts us to ask, 'Why me God?’ But instead of staging a pity party when the pain hits, or trying to avoid or escape it, we must learn to trust God in the moment. It’s sacred space because God is up to something and can use us in the midst of those circumstances. Often the most intimate connection with God can come during the most painful times.
-Trust God in the moment of promotion
Every time Joseph endured a setback, he was blessed and wound up better off than before. It was God’s doing, not Joseph’s. We often try to promote ourselves but ultimately we must give that over to God. Instead of orchestrating your way up the ladder, leave room for God’s redemption in your life.
-Trust God in the middle of injustice
Joseph had multiple injustices committed against him. Life is not fair, and it’s not up to us to exact justice. Nowhere in scripture does it say that we should fight for our own justice — it does say we should step in for others and fight over their injustice, but never for ourselves.
Instead of seeking to obtain our own justice, entrust that to God (1 Peter 2.23). God will do far more for you than you can do for yourself. When you hold on to offenses committed against you, it blocks the Spirit’s work in your life.
-Trust God when you’re not recognized
Joseph took the attitude that he would worship God in whatever situation he was placed, whether in prison or at the ruler’s right hand. You may have been passed over for recognition or a promotion at work. Let your satisfaction come from God’s recognition rather than from human affirmation.
-Trust God by giving him the glory
Be humble and recognize that it’s God working through you, and that any accomplishment or achievement doesn’t come from your own strength.
-Trust God for justice
When Jospeh had the chance to get back at his brothers, he didn’t take it. Instead, he wept. Clearly Joseph was wounded deeply by his family members yet he didn’t take justice into his own hands. He recognized the big picture.
-Trust God in healing
Can you love people despite the wrongs they might have done to you? Don’t stuff your past or try to forget it, but also don’t hang onto it. Put your trust in God to bring healing to painful relationships. Your story of redemption can glorify God.
-Trust God’s plan
In Genesis 50:18-21 Joseph concluded that what his brothers intended for harm against him, God intended for good. God can use you in powerful ways to bring glory and beauty out of ashes when we make ourselves available to Him. Trust God’s timing. If you want to experience redemption, trust him, however hard it might be.
Jesus allowed his life to be ripped apart, to be shredded into pieces, so we might experience redemption. If you need hope in the middle of pain, know that God loves you radically and is longing for you to trust him. Commit your everyday work to his plans.